Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced on Dec. 7 that he will allow CNOOC, China's state-owned oil company, to take over Canadian fossil fuel giant Nexen.
CNOOC, a company with one of the lowest transparency rankings in the oil patch, will buy out a Canadian firm.
The Harper government has gutted environmental legislation so that Chinese state-owned enterprises and pipeline companies can build without democratic barriers. It has ignored climate change and energy security for Canadians.
The government has devoted millions in public funds to bitumen and pipeline lobbying abroad for Big Oil. It has attacked environmental groups and treated First Nations like Tibetans.
Any day now, Harper could also decide to pass the Canada-China Foreign Investment Protection Act (FIPA), a major new trade deal with China that would grant unprecedented powers to Chinese corporations that own Canadian natural resources.
CNOOC would be able to sue Canadian governments in secret tribunals if our governments do anything to counter its growing interests-including common sense environmental protections and job creation efforts, just like NAFTA (the North American Free Trade Agreement), only more dangerous.
Canada has already spent hundreds of millions on penalties from lawsuits launched under NAFTA, and is currently being sued by a U.S. corporation because Quebec placed a temporary moratorium on fracking to study its controversial health and safety impacts. If FIPA passes, the door will be open for CNOOC and other Chinese corporations to do the same, or even worse.
Susan Davidson, Aldergrove
@ Copyright 2013